UN envoy says Israel to blame for October 7 massacre

UN Special Rapporteur on the Palestinian territories Francesca Albanese says the October 7 massacre was not antisemitic, but that the 1,200 victims were killed in response to Israeli oppression; 'I regret that some interpreted my tweet as justifying Hamas' crimes'

Francesca Albanese, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Palestinian territories, told The Guardian on Saturday that Israel is breaching the Hague Tribunal's orders regarding the Gaza war. Hours later, in a tweet that sparked outrage, she wrote that "the victims in the October 7 massacre were not killed because of their Judaism, but in response to Israeli oppression."
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Albanese referred to a statement by French President Emmanuel Macron, who claimed that the massacre four months ago was the largest against Jews in the current century. Following her assertion, she posted on the X platform that "France and the international community did nothing to prevent it," referring to "Israeli oppression."
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פרנצ'סקה אלבנזה
פרנצ'סקה אלבנזה
Francesca Albanese
In a clarification tweet published later that night, she wrote: "I regret that some interpreted my tweet as 'justifying' Hamas's crimes, which I have condemned strongly several times. I reject all forms of racism, including antisemitism. However, labeling these crimes as 'antisemitic' obscures the real reason they occurred."
Albanese has long been considered a controversial figure in Israel and has been denied entry into the Palestinian territories in the past as a result. Among other incidents, she spoke on a Zoom call at a conference of Hamas and Palestinian Jihad leaders in November 2022, telling senior terror organization figures: "You have the right to resist occupation."
She also hinted at her opposition to the two-state solution during her speech then, saying to the Gazan audience: "The West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza are what remains of historical Palestine. This language is not new, but it will help the international community feel uncomfortable with a two-state solution."
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